Efficiency study

Old Jan 11, 05, 9:32 am
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Efficiency study

The big engineer types are at it again at DEN. We had an efficiency study last year and they asked us to have passengers lay out their items in a certain order on the x-ray belt: Shoes, luggage, then laptops. The thinking was that a passenger would come through put their shoes on while waiting for the rest of the luggage and laptop to appear and the line would move faster. Problem was that they didnt consider the people would value laptops to the point that they wanted it to get out of the x-ray and get possession of it before it walked away. Needless to say their shoes took a back seat.
Today starts another study! They took one of the WTMD out of the South checkpoint. Therefore now there are two x-ray lines feeding one WTMD! This is supposed to increase efficiency? What do all you FF think? Please keep it light and on topic.
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Old Jan 11, 05, 11:29 am
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Yes, they need to take into account that the savvy traveler is going to be primarily concerned with protecting valuables, which means securing the laptop and other electronics and wallet first, before worrying about shoes, which are unlikely to be stolen.
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Old Jan 11, 05, 12:00 pm
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It's a poor idea. They'll lose time if they have to have stop the conveyor to have the "why we think it is a good idea for you to take your shoes off discussion." If they keep the conveyor running, bags can pass while we help the screeners realize that they really don't like their jobs.
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Old Jan 11, 05, 4:15 pm
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If the DEN TSA is serious about efficiency, then it would follow the TSA SOP and let the people with the appropriate shoes pass through unmolested (literally and figuratively).

In the long run, I take this as a great sign. It tells me that money and manpower for the TSA are thinning. While it means very little today, it comes over to me as a sign for the long term that the whole TSA model might be crumbling.
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Old Jan 11, 05, 5:13 pm
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Originally Posted by eyecue
Today starts another study! They took one of the WTMD out of the South checkpoint. Therefore now there are two x-ray lines feeding one WTMD! This is supposed to increase efficiency? What do all you FF think? Please keep it light and on topic.
If you mean two x-ray machines for carry-ons feeding one WTMD, I definitely think it is worth studying. I think most of the backup I have experienced is caused by people unloading all of their crap, taking their shoes off, waiting for the belt to clear, etc. I have rarely had to wait for the WTMD in recent memory.
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Old Jan 11, 05, 6:37 pm
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Originally Posted by Doppy
Yes, they need to take into account that the savvy traveler is going to be primarily concerned with protecting valuables, which means securing the laptop and other electronics and wallet first, before worrying about shoes, which are unlikely to be stolen.
We FT'ers also did a study of which order we should send our stuff through. We didn't come up with the same order they did in Denver.
As Doppy just mentioned, we value our laptops and will put them somewhere in the middle of the stuff... not at the beginning, not at the end.
Don't get too pushy, TSA. It's bad enough that we have to go through all this, now they want to tell us the order!!
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Old Jan 11, 05, 6:50 pm
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Originally Posted by doctall41
We FT'ers also did a study of which order we should send our stuff through. We didn't come up with the same order they did in Denver.
As Doppy just mentioned, we value our laptops and will put them somewhere in the middle of the stuff... not at the beginning, not at the end.
Don't get too pushy, TSA. It's bad enough that we have to go through all this, now they want to tell us the order!!
i go through with crowds that are predominantly business travellers. you have some that want it first so they can "meet it on the way down", others who want it in the middle, and last those that don't want to walk through 'till the laptop goes through last.

let the people do what they want, it's probably going to slow down the line more if theres an effort to try and get the masses to follow some specific order.
 
Old Jan 11, 05, 7:00 pm
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Originally Posted by doctall41
We FT'ers also did a study of which order we should send our stuff through. We didn't come up with the same order they did in Denver.
As Doppy just mentioned, we value our laptops and will put them somewhere in the middle of the stuff... not at the beginning, not at the end.
Hmm--I do shoes, luggage, laptop, which apparently was the DEN suggestion. I don't let go of my laptop until the WTMD is available, and I don't go through the WTMD until my laptop is through the flappers. If they scan the bags quick, I retrieve the laptop first. If they are slow, I put my shoes on. IMO that allows me max control over the most stealable item.

Under circumstances with pax that have a clue and with the 2nd-chance WTMD rule, I think the idea of 2 x-ray per wtmd is worth investigation. WTMD doesn't seem to have many backups these days.

But if there are a lot of clueless pax with keys/coins, or if TSA (secretly) jacks up the sensitivity on the WTMD to enforce the upcoming no-lighter rules, I don't think the idea has a chance.
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Old Jan 11, 05, 7:12 pm
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They were doing 2-xray per WTMD the last time I was at SFO. It seemed to cause confusion when they pulled people aside who wanted to be able to view their stuff while being groped in the secondary.
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Old Jan 11, 05, 10:42 pm
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Originally Posted by studentff
Hmm--I do shoes, luggage, laptop, which apparently was the DEN suggestion. I don't let go of my laptop until the WTMD is available, and I don't go through the WTMD until my laptop is through the flappers. If they scan the bags quick, I retrieve the laptop first. If they are slow, I put my shoes on. IMO that allows me max control over the most stealable item.

Under circumstances with pax that have a clue and with the 2nd-chance WTMD rule, I think the idea of 2 x-ray per wtmd is worth investigation. WTMD doesn't seem to have many backups these days.

But if there are a lot of clueless pax with keys/coins, or if TSA (secretly) jacks up the sensitivity on the WTMD to enforce the upcoming no-lighter rules, I don't think the idea has a chance.
Here in DEN, you have to watch out for everything. Last year a TSA cronie was arrested for trying to lift $400 out of a CARRY-ON bag. Tried to steal it in front of everyone else.

Also here in DEN, the WTMD settings are different from lane to lane. So, I don't think you have to worry about increased detection settings...they can't get the current ones set straight right now. The settings are different from airport to airport anyway.
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Old Jan 11, 05, 11:00 pm
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Originally Posted by eyecue
The big engineer types are at it again at DEN. We had an efficiency study last year and they asked us to have passengers lay out their items in a certain order on the x-ray belt: Shoes, luggage, then laptops. The thinking was that a passenger would come through put their shoes on while waiting for the rest of the luggage and laptop to appear and the line would move faster. Problem was that they didnt consider the people would value laptops to the point that they wanted it to get out of the x-ray and get possession of it before it walked away. Needless to say their shoes took a back seat.
Today starts another study! They took one of the WTMD out of the South checkpoint. Therefore now there are two x-ray lines feeding one WTMD! This is supposed to increase efficiency? What do all you FF think? Please keep it light and on topic.
If DEN TSA is truly interested in efficiency, they'll stop the "all shoes off" shoe carnival. Lately I joke with the DEN TSA agents when they ask me to take my shoes off. I'll say things like "Oh, shoes off...I must be in Denver." I usually get laughter as a response, or statements like "yeah, we're famous for that" or some such acknowledgement that DEN has a shoe fetish.
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Old Jan 12, 05, 1:47 am
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Some of the checkpoints at my airport are trying this and it's not working. It's making things ever crazier than it already is. This whole put property in the x-ray in a certain order is a new one on me. Wouldn't you need a line monitor to make that work and we don't have them because everyone is too busy running around doing other things. If they really want to make things more efficent I would say get ideas from the people who work the checkpoints instead of someone who has a engineering degree but who has never worked a security checkpoint at an airport.
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Old Jan 12, 05, 6:06 am
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Originally Posted by eyecue
Today starts another study! They took one of the WTMD out of the South checkpoint. Therefore now there are two x-ray lines feeding one WTMD! This is supposed to increase efficiency? What do all you FF think? Please keep it light and on topic.
Efficiency can be measured by the amount of work divided by the number of resources involved. They just redced the amount of resources (the WTMD Lane). If they also reduced staffing by the same amoun, then I'd supposed they are slightly more efficient here.

But the passengers do not benefit in this situation; only TSA.

Had TSA added another XRay to an existing WTMD then they'd still have two x-rays per WTMD and having an extra X-Ray machine in the overall system would benefit passengers.
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Old Jan 12, 05, 9:32 am
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ah

Originally Posted by LessO2
Here in DEN, you have to watch out for everything. Last year a TSA cronie was arrested for trying to lift $400 out of a CARRY-ON bag. Tried to steal it in front of everyone else.
You dont have your facts straight

Also here in DEN, the WTMD settings are different from lane to lane. So, I don't think you have to worry about increased detection settings...they can't get the current ones set straight right now. The settings are different from airport to airport anyway.
You dont have your facts straight.
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Old Jan 12, 05, 9:47 am
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Originally Posted by eyecue

[In response to comments by Less02 regarding theft and WTMD at DEN]

You dont have your facts straight
?

There have been multiple reported cases of theft by screeners at DEN. Those are facts. The reports seem to be a little less frequent now, and it appears that the offenders are being fired and dealt with. But I'd still be careful everywhere and a little more so at DEN.

And it matters not to passengers if WTMDs are set differently or if they are all set the same but the dielectric and metal environments around the WTMDs cause them to behave differently. What matters to passengers is if they set off the WTMD while carrying their usual complement of clothes and metal, and based on passenger reports here, there is inconsistency at DEN and elsewhere.

I'm not sure what rational reason TSA has for being so secretive about WTMD settings. Anyone who flys a lot or even anyone who peruses FT posts from early 2001 to present can get a reasonable approximation as to when major (national) changes in sensitivity happened and when large-scale equipment replacements happened.
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